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News Moths drove holidaymaker to plunge off hotel balcony; MIDLAND MAN WAS TRYING TO ESCAPE INSECTS.

Byline: JAMES CARTLEDGE Content Editor @Jim5875

A MIDLAND tourist was left fighting for his life after he plunged three storeys from his holiday hotel - because of his phobia of MOTHS.

Kirk Shepherd suffered a brain haemmorhage after he desperately tried to escape the insects on his balcony during a sunshine break in Turkey.

The 34-year-old dad, from Lichfield, was unconscious for four days, leaving his wife Joy fearing the worst.

"We were just standing talking when lots of moths flew towards him," she told BBC WM.

"As he was trying to get away from them, he just went over the balcony. It was complete and utter mayhem.

"It happened so quickly. We looked over the balcony and he was on the floor. There were no signs of any movement."

Kirk was unconscious and spent almost three weeks in hospital as he recovered.

He also suffered a perforated eardrum, broken collarbone, six broken ribs and a fracture in his back.

"I remember waking up and Joy asking me: 'Do you know where you are?'" he recalled.

"The accident happened in June last year and although I've since returned to work, I have been struggling physically.

"I'm not one for sitting at home and I'm determined to get back to normal.

"I think in the long run I'm always going to have discomfort in my back and side. It's difficult."

Joy said that her husband still has "constant" flashbacks. "I can be lying in bed and something will just come back," she said.

"It can be any time of the day or night.

"It's going to be an ongoing thing but, at the end of the day, it's all worked out good.

"He's here. I honestly thought I was coming home without him."

Kirk is unsure what started his fear of moths - but it is a common phobia.

Its medical name is Mottephobia, which derives from the German 'Motte' (moths) and Greek 'phobos' (fear).

The disorder typically triggers a severe panic attack, during which the sufferer continuously pictures a moth attacking him.

The fear of moths is most usually triggered by childhood memories of being frightened by a moth.

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Publication:Birmingham Mail (England)
Date:Jul 28, 2016
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